judith and holofernes (donatello) type of statue

Judith and holofernes (donatello) type of statue
It depicts the assassination of the Assyrian general Holofernes by Judith and is remarkable for being one of the first Renaissance sculptures to be conceived in the round, with its four distinct faces. The subject of Judith beheading Holofernes, depicting the climax of the story in the deuterocanonical Book of Judith, was a common subject in art and is associated with the Power of Women topos.
Judith and Holofernes depicts Judith standing powerfully with a raised sword, holding the head of Holofernes by his hair. The statue was originally gilded; some gilding remains on the sword. To facilitate the gilding the bronze was cast in 11 parts. The base of the sculpture resembles a cushion, a naturalistic device first used by Donatello for his St. Mark in the Orsanmichele. Intended to function as a fountain, this statue sits on a triangular pedestal with holes for water to flow through. [3]

Judith symbolizes victory by the weak over the strong for a just cause. Both virtue and liberty are also meanings present in this statue. It also believed to represent Florentine liberty with its original, but no longer visible, inscription relating to kingdoms and cities, the prior falling through luxury and the latter rising through virtue.
Judith and Holofernes is a bronze sculpture created by the Renaissance Italian painter and sculpture known as Donatello. It was completed in the year 1460 which was towards the end of his career. It was originally commissioned by Cosimo de’ Medici to be placed as an adornment to the fountain in a Palazzo Medici-Riccardi garden. It is one of two Donatello statues standing in the palace along with David. Both depict tyrant slayers. Together, they are considered two of the earliest of any Italian Renaissance free standing statues. Judith and Holofernes can currently be viewed at the Hall of Lilies in the Palazzo Vecchio in Florence, Italy, which is also the sculptor’s birthplace.

Judith and holofernes (donatello) type of statue
16 The evolution of this alternative emphasis can be traced in text and imagery; given our focus, analysis is limited to Tuscany. The treatise Li Livres dou Tresor, written in the 1260s by Brunetto Latini, is crucial. Latini, forced to leave his native Florence when the Holy Roman Emperor Manfred defeated the city’s Guelphs at Montaperti (1260), spent the next seven years in France, returning when news reached him of Manfred’s death and the Ghibelline defeat in Florence. Throughout the rest of his life, he served the newly established Florentine Republic, modeled on that of ancient Rome, and was mentor to Dante.9 Latini’s book, a compendium of science, ethics, rhetoric, and practical politics, was often recopied and translated.10
23 The preacher typically built series of sermons around books from the Old Testament. He went through them line by line in order to develop moralteachings and prophetic ideas pertinent to his current context. Savonarola favored the books written by the Jewish prophets, implicitly linking his predictions about Florence to their visions of a faithful Israel’s messianic redemption punctuated by dire warnings about disobedience to God and his messengers.

References:

http://totallyhistory.com/judith-and-holofernes/
http://books.openedition.org/obp/1015
http://womennart.com/2017/10/18/judith-beheading-holofernes/

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